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Statue of Robert E. Lee (Austin, Texas) facts for kids

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Statue of Robert E. Lee
Robert E. Lee by Pompeo Coppini - University of Texas at Austin - DSC08624.jpg
The statue in 2015
Artist Pompeo Coppini
Year 1933 (1933)
Medium Bronze sculpture
Subject Robert E. Lee
Location Austin, Texas, United States
Owner University of Texas at Austin

Robert E. Lee is an outdoor bronze sculpture depicting the American general of the same name by Pompeo Coppini. The sculpture was commissioned in 1919 by George W. Littlefield to be included in the Littlefield Fountain on the campus of the University of Texas at Austin. It was installed on the university's South Mall in Austin, Texas from 1933 until its removal in 2017.

History

In 1919, University of Texas regent George W. Littlefield donated funds to pay for the construction of a "Memorial Gateway" at the south entrance to the university's campus that would honor the Confederate dead from the Civil War. He hired San Antonio-based Italian-born sculptor Pompeo Coppini to design the monument, which was to include a number of statues of notable figures from the history of Texas and the American South. The memorial was ultimately redesigned as the Littlefield Fountain and instead dedicated to the university's students and alumni who had died in the Great War (now known as World War I).

As part of the memorial project, in the 1920s Coppini sculpted bronze statues of Robert E. Lee and five other Texan and Confederate notables selected by Littlefield, which he intended to display around the fountain. However, as construction on the memorial proceeded in the early 1930s, campus architect Paul Cret decided to instead install the six statues along the university's South Mall, where they were placed in 1933 as the construction of the fountain complex was completed.

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